Montgomery, Oct. 26, 2004 - The Alabama State Bar has just received word that its original Law Day drama, "Cross that River: Brown v. Board of Education and the People Who Lived It" has been named a recipient of the American Bar Association's 2004 Outstanding Law Day Activities Award. The award will be presented on Feb. 11, 2005 at the American Bar Association's mid-year meeting in Salt Lake City.
With leadership by the state bar's Law Day Committee co-chairs, Montgomery attorneys Tim Lewis and Tommy Klinner, community theater director Margie Benson, school librarian Jane Garrett and retired teacher Rebecca Gregory worked hand-in-hand with local musician Jeff Pate in the daunting task of creating an original script and music, interweaving the stories of those who were the first to be personally affected by the historic ruling. The impressive courtroom of the Alabama Supreme Court provided a perfect setting for the performances, which featured a final cast that included attorneys, judges, students, retirees and seven amazing young people! The powerful Norman Rockwell painting "The Problem We All Live With" served as the drama's main theme. The dramatic opening tableau brought the Norman Rockwell painting to life - with young Ruby Bridges being led by her caring teacher's hand into that first classroom experience. A towering presence and voice made the pivotal role of Thurgood Marshall, played by Tim Wells, come to life along with a compelling performance of South Carolina lawyer John W. Davis by local university student/teacher Jason Lee proving to be a worthy opponent.
State Bar president, Douglas McElvy of Montgomery, commented that "This prestigious award is yet another example of the Alabama Bar's national leadership. The Alabama Bar and Alabama lawyers are constantly on the lookout for ways to improve our services, not only to our clients and the profession but also to the community. I am proud of our attorney and community volunteers for their work in winning this award."
For complete information on the project or getting a CD of the drama for use in schools or churches, call the bar at 334-269-1515.